Mayor will not seek re-election |

Mayor will not seek re-election

Elaine Goodman

Mike Weber

After saying as recently as last week that he intended to run for another term on the City Council, Mayor Mike Weber has changed his mind and will not seek re-election.

Weber’s decision means the filing period for City Council candidates has been extended until 5 p.m. Wednesday. The filing period, which would have ended Friday, is extended if an incumbent decides not to run. Weber is not allowed to file during the extension.

Weber, who is wrapping up his first term on the council, said he has served his four years, and now it’s someone else’s turn. He encouraged some of those he called the community’s “serial whiners” to run.

“I’d like to see more people sign up,” Weber said. “Get on the inside. Get in the game. Learn something.”

Weber plans to remain active in the community but said he considers himself “a public servant, not a politician.”

Not serving on the City Council will give Weber more time to spend with his family, which includes three adult children, two grandchildren and two children, ages 9 and 12, still living at home.

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And he said his decision will make him “more empowered” as mayor, since no one will be able to call his actions a ploy to win re-election.

Weber’s seat is one of two on the City Council that are open in the Nov. 4 election. The other belongs to Councilman Ted Long, who is running for re-election.

Other candidates who already have filed include Jonnie Crawford, wife of current Councilman Bill Crawford; Warren Kessler, a wedding minister and licensed private investigator; and John Spinola, owner of a small business that provides ministry and photography services for weddings.

New to the race is Austin Sass, director of resort sales for Heavenly Mountain Resort. Sass, who has lived in South Lake Tahoe off and on since 1975, said his experience in the casino and ski industries would be an asset as a council member.

“I love South Lake Tahoe,” Sass said. “I fear that the balance that is necessary to maintain the environment and yet maintain our tourist-based economy is in jeopardy.”

Bruce Grego took out papers Thursday to enter the race but had not filed them as of Friday, according to the City Clerk’s Office.

Another resident who had expressed interest in running has decided not to do so. Tyler Cannon, owner of Sprouts Natural Foods Cafe, said he does not have the time to devote to serving on the council, which by some estimates is 15 to 20 hours per week.

“I wish I could. I just cannot afford the time,” said Cannon, who has three young children and “too many projects on the burner at this time.”

But Cannon remains interested in possibly running in a future election. “There will be a time when it’s right for me,” he said.

Those interested in filing can pick up nomination papers at the City Clerk’s Office at the Lake Tahoe Airport from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call the clerk’s office at (530) 542-6004.